Issue by Issue – Kamandi: The Last Boy on Earth #43

kamandi-43Writer – Martin Pasko, Gerry Conway
Artist – Chic Stone, Pablo Marcus
Inker – Mike Royer, Bob Smith
Letters – Mike Royer

Something strange is going on of late with Kamandi and his friends. He can feel it, something to do with their temperaments of late and more to the point, as they finally arrive in Nashville to visit his friend Tuftan, he sees it. Of all the things he did not expect to happen, Kamandi and Arna are betrayed by their friend Doctor Canus who has ordered them captured and put in chains like the rest of the ‘animals’. Like the many times before, Kamandi will not be chained nor held a prisoner by anyone and so he and Arna make a break for it. While that is taking place, Martin Pasko, Gerry Conway and Chic Stone flash to Ben Boxer who is still a prisoner of the Tigers and much like Kamandi, he has had enough. With a bit of luck, Ben is able to activate his cyclo-heart and transform his body into steel and thus break free from all of the madness that surrounds him. A little further luck brings him into contact with Kamandi and Arna and the three of them make good their escape, though they do not find themselves out of danger. One of the more interesting developments this issue finds Kamandi and Arna finally getting romantic, their feelings for each other having deepened over the weeks that they have been together. It is good to see and yet as a reader you cannot help but be afraid for the two as those that Kamandi has fallen in love with do not end up being long for the mortal plain. Additionally, there is a backup tale by Conway and Pablo Marcus that takes the reader back to the early days after the war and more specifically, to New York. Here we find a young ape named Urgall, having returned from his travels abroad with a story of hardship and slavery. He does not like the things that he sees and it saddens him greatly. Even more so is the fact that he now finds his tribe doing the very same thing that he is telling them about and due to his protestations, he is cast out to wander once again. While many of the backup stories that would feature in DC’s books would have nothing to do with the main feature, this one does and it is nice to see a little history to put things in context. Two stories equal twice the fun and even better is the fact that they were exceptionally well done.

4 out of 5

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